With the signing of a one-year contract, #TheChampionsBrand has found its home in Chicago, Illinois.
With the US Open Cup just getting started, we bring the #DiazaMentality to the finish line.
But first, let’s know a little bit more about Chicago House.
Chicago House AC was launched in 2021 as a professional club to bring soccer with a social conscience to Chicago while inviting all to join our House. House is structured as a public benefit corporation. This means, in addition to other considerations, we are committed to grassroots engagement across the diverse landscape of Chicagoland’s great communities.
This includes working with appropriate amateur sports teams, cultural and social justice organizations and international groups to develop relationships that will mutually benefit the club and its community partners. The team has a deeply positive impact on underserved neighborhoods through numerous initiatives that provide opportunities for educational programming, mentorship and safe places to play soccer and futsal for children in the city. House also works inclusively with organizations to improve social justice, racial equality, diversity and community improvement.
“House moved from the third division NISA to Midwest Premier League in 2022 and went 13 straight matches undefeated while losing only one time”, explained Peter Wilt, managing partner, CEO and founder of Chicago House Athletic Club, “It was a successful MWPL season going undefeated 10 straight matches after suffering a 1-0 loss in its opener. House then entered regional US Open Cup qualifying in August, 2022 and advanced through all four rounds to qualify for the 2023 US Open Cup in dramatic fashion with a nine round penalty kick victory over Brockton United FC outside Boston, MA.”
Chicago House also serves non-profit organizations like New Life Centers and the Ronald McDonald House of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana.
At New Life Centers House players, coaches, staff and owners volunteer to assist with their youth soccer programming and food distribution program. New Life Centers of Chicagoland NFP is a model for gang intervention and after-school programs.
It was originally created in 2005 to address the needs of the neighbors’ surrounding locations of New Life Community Church. As neighbors approached the church with pressing issues–youth violence, gang violence, teen pregnancy, justice system involvement, unemployment–New Life responded with custom-made Centers programs that fit the community. House us proud to support New Life Centers initiatives.
Ronald McDonald House has served Chicago House staff members Brian Koenig and Jacob Rutledge personally several times and inspired House to give back through volunteer and fundraising efforts.
They exist so families can get better together. They believe when a child is sick, a family is sick. That’s why, since 1977, RMH has kept families together with their hospitalized children through the Ronald McDonald House® and Ronald McDonald Family Room® programs, enabling them to get better together.
Diaza is always focused on establish new partnerships with organization that bring something special and unique to the soccer table. And on that subject, Chicago House provides an alternative to the existing soccer landscape in Chicago.
The club provides tremendous development opportunities for high level players capable of playing professional soccer. Many House players have moved up after each of the club's two seasons to higher level professional clubs.
Those players have gone on to sign professional contracts domestically in third division NISA, USL League One and MLS Next Pro and to 2nd division USL Championship as well as in Europe and Mexico. House, led by Technical Director and Head Coach Matt Poland is the only amateur club in the region that provides four weekly training sessions in addition to a seven month schedule of competitive games which in 2023 includes participation in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup.
Speaking about the community side, Chicago House is committed to being a resource to the community in greater Chicagoland.
House players, coaches, staff and owners volunteer their time to underserved communities in various charitable efforts and the players also serve as youth soccer coaches in the city and suburbs.
“Many of the players also provide individual personal soccer training to help grow the game for the next generation in Chicagoland. Chicago House is among the Midwest Premier League leaders in social media following and engagement with more Twitter, Instagram and Facebook followers than any team in the 36 club league. House uses its strong social media presence and large email database to communicate regularly with fans and keep the community engaged”, said club’s CEO Peter.
Finally, Wilt took a minute to share his insights about this new partnership: “Diaza's values of family, strength, leadership, passion, overcoming obstacles, daily improvement, endurance and hard effort are admired by Chicago House. House aspires to embrace and share those values while wearing the Diaza brand. The Diaza brand will be an important part of this phase of the Chicago House development as House grows from a 1st and 2nd team in 2022 to add a women's team and girls teams in 2023 and boys youth teams in 2024. The shared values and vision of Diaza and Chicago House will continue to grow as we work together on the field and in the community.”
Both Chicago House and Diaza believe winning goes beyond the pitch and into the community. Chicago House AC shares the values of all Chicagoans with a special emphasis on social justice, racial equality, inclusion, serving the underserved, and having fun while doing it.
Chicago House AC will actively work to make Chicago a better place through philanthropy, service, winning trophies, and inspiring Chicagoans to stand at the forefront of their communities to create lasting change.